Wildfire Systems

Survey: One Quarter of U.S. Consumers Will Switch Banks for a Better Shopping Rewards Program

Inflation is driving consumers to prioritize the availability of cashback rewards when choosing a new financial institution


San Diego, November 16, 2022 /PR Newswire/ -- Wildfire Systems Inc., an innovative fintech platform that powers reward programs and shopping companions, in conjunction with research firm Big Village (formerly Engine Insights), today released a report titled, “Online Shopping Rewards Have Gone Mainstream, Offering A Win For Banks, Retailers, And Consumers Alike.” The report details consumers’ attitudes and expectations towards shopping rewards and other incentive programs amid rising inflation.  

The survey assessed the opinions of more than 1,000 adults nationwide, uncovering how inflation and rising prices have made a major impact on spending habits, driving consumers to seek ways to save money on essentials and everyday purchases made online. The report reveals the growing importance and popularity of rewards programs along with consumers’ increasing  expectations that their financial institutions provide these programs as part of their offerings.

The report’s key takeaways include:

Consumers overwhelmingly want their banks to offer cashback rewards programs for online shopping

  • 85% want their banks to offer a cashback rewards program
  • 80% of respondents consider cashback rewards an important feature when choosing a new bank or investment account
  • 63% expect to earn shopping rewards from their credit cards and 35% from their debit cards
  • 78% most prefer cashback as their preferred reward type


Inflation is driving more consumers to look for money-saving tactics when shopping

  • 90% of consumers are more interested in getting discounts, using coupons, and earning cashback rewards when they shop because of rising prices
  • 1 of 3 consumers started using cashback rewards programs in the past two years
  • The majority of higher income households also value rewards, with 82% of respondents with a household income over $100K saying they seek them
  • 81% are more likely to make a purchase when offered a reward, increasing their use of their credit and debit cards, which benefits their financial institutions

Many consumers experience confusion with their current rewards program and would prefer a simpler, more seamless rewards experience

  • Consumers do participate in bank rewards programs, with 47% using cashback programs
  • 38% of rewards program participants have never actually received any rewards
  • 63% of respondents who never received a reward indicated some sort of confusion around their rewards program
  • 79% of consumers prefer rewards to be automatically applied as they shop, just 21% prefer searching from a directory or a list of offers
  • 7 out of 10 consumers prefer cashback deposited directly into a bank account or as a credit on their credit card

Financial institutions have an opportunity to connect with customers through rewards programs to increase customer satisfaction and long-term retention

  • 71% of consumers say they have switched banks at some point in their lives
  • A combined one-quarter (24%) of respondents would switch or have switched because another bank offered a cashback / rewards program, or it had a better version of a rewards program than their current bank
  • Over half of consumers interact fewer than 2x/month with their bank using a computer, and 38% of consumers interact with their bank’s mobile app fewer than 2x/month


“These findings confirm that most consumers expect to earn rewards when they use their credit or debit card when shopping online, which has huge implications for financial institutions,” said Jordan Glazier, CEO, Wildfire. “Not only do consumers consider cashback rewards a factor in how they choose a bank, but many have switched banks because of the rewards programs offered. Our research underscores the fact that rewards programs are no longer a ‘nice to have’ but have become an essential offering that makes banks and card issuers essential to the daily lives of their customers.”

Please download the report for full results of the Wildfire Systems survey.

About Wildfire Systems, Inc.

Wildfire Systems provides an enterprise platform which enables clients to embed social commerce, cashback rewards, digital coupons, and shopping companions within their existing services. Wildfire’s patented suite of technologies rewards online shopping and harnesses digital word-of-mouth, delivering enhanced user experiences, consumer loyalty, and new revenue streams for clients. Wildfire drives incremental revenue for over 50,000 online merchant programs in over 50 countries. The company is based in San Diego County and was founded in 2017. For more information, visit wildfire-corp.com


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Published by Wildfire Systems November 16, 2022
Wildfire Systems